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Wednesday, 1 October 1958


Sir PHILIP MCBRIDE - I saw the report mentioned by the honorable member, and I considered it of such importance that I had inquiries made. I am now able to say that the report was incorrect. The position is that over the past two years Communist China has been chartering ships from a number of countries. Our information is that it has chartered, in all, about 100 ships in Europe, of which between ten and twenty were from the United Kingdom. The primary purpose of the chartering has been to keep the transport of cargoes in Chinese hands. Our information is that the rate of chartering has not been accelerated recently.







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